5224 SE 26th Ave., 503-208-3416, giganticbrewing.com. 3-9 pm Monday-Wednesday. 2-10 pm Thursday-Friday, noon-10 pm Saturday, noon-9 pm Sunday.
Gigantic has a cult following. Maybe it's their punchy label art and prolific output of new recipes, spurred by a vow to pair their flagship IPA with an always-new seasonal creation. Though the brewery is hidden in an industrial no-man's land behind Reed College, there's usually at least a few devotees who have to be shoved out after the bar's early closing hours. The former warehouse is decorated with Timbers apparel—owner-brewers Ben Love and Van Havig are both loyal supporters—music posters and a musket. The decor makes it seem all the more cheeky that, in addition to beer and cider, they sell champagne by the bottle. Gigantic's core lineup consists of one beer, Gigantic's flagship IPA. But for its five year anniversary this year, it's making an exception to the one-than-done rule, and bringing back some of their recipes for one month stints—including their Most Premium Russian Imperial Stout, which we named one of the state's best beers the first time around. It's the surprises that make Gigantic worth seeking out, like their barrel aged Pipewrench, one of the first gin barrel-aged creations in the state, which is surprisingly light for something so boozy, with a seriously juicy finish.
Nearby: The Woodstock neighborhood just got its first real beer bar, Proper Pint (5965 SE 52nd Ave., 971-544-7167, facebook.com/ProperPintTaproom), a surprisingly homey spot with patterned-cushion seats and cluttered bookshelves forming its back wall and a sliding door leading out to a friendly patio shaded by Japanese maples. The rotating 24-tap beer list is analog rather than digital, made with strips of printed vinyl and on our visit included some really nice deep cuts like a Cryo IPA from tiny Trap Door in Vancouver and a blueberry gose from New Mexico's Marble. There's a red phone in the back, hardwired to order Chicago-style thin crust from Bridge City Pizza down the street.